Are you feeling overwhelmed by the thought of student loans? You’re certainly not alone. With college tuition skyrocketing and recent Supreme Court rulings on loan forgiveness, understanding exactly how to manage your student loans can be difficult.

But fear not! We’re here to help simplify this conundrum and get you prepared for the upcoming October return of student loan payments.

Time to unravel all things related to budgeting when it comes to student loans – taking into account history, costs, tolls on lifestyle, strategies for debt elimination…and more!

Keep reading if you’re ready to get a handle on student loan debt once and for all.

The Uncontrolled Growth of Student Loan Debt: Why Is It Happening?

In just over three decades, the cost of a public four-year education has skyrocketed. Back in 1987, the total annual cost, including tuition, fees, room, and board, was a reasonable $4,403. If the price had kept up with the nation’s inflation rate, it would be around $10,528 in 2021.

However, the reality is far from that. The price of higher education has far surpassed the inflation rate, reaching an astonishing $21,878 in 2021. So, what’s the reason behind these soaring costs? Keep reading to find out.

The Funding Crisis: How States Pulled Back

Following the 2008 recession, states made the decision to cut funding for public two-year and four-year colleges. In fact, between 2008 and 2018, state funding for public colleges fell by a staggering 6.6 billion dollars.

To compensate for this loss, colleges and universities had no choice but to significantly raise tuition costs, burdening students with the financial aftermath.

The Growing Demand: The Rise of College Applicants

Over the past few decades, the number of people applying to colleges has been steadily increasing. A college degree is no longer seen as optional but as a necessity by many. This heightened demand for higher education has put additional strain on the system and contributed to the escalating costs.

The Burden of Rising Operating Costs

Running a university has become an increasingly expensive endeavor. Infrastructure maintenance, faculty salaries, research funding, and utilities all contribute to the growing operating costs. As these expenses continue to rise, colleges and universities are forced to pass on the burden to students in the form of higher tuition fees.

What Student Loan Borrowers Can Do To Prepare For Returning Payments

Returning to student loan payments after a period of deferment or forbearance can be a difficult reality to face. However, it’s important to embrace the situation and start taking steps to prepare. Here’s what you can do to be prepared when student loan payments return this October.

Write a budget

Creating a realistic budget will not only help you meet your student loan obligations but also provide a clear picture of your overall financial health and goals. It’s essential to consider all your income sources and expenses when drafting your budget.

Start by listing your fixed expenses such as rent, utilities, and transportation costs. Then, identify discretionary expenses like dining out or entertainment and evaluate where you can cut back.

By understanding your cash flow and where your money goes, you can allocate a realistic amount towards your student loan payments without compromising your other financial responsibilities.

Incorporate Student Loan Payments Into Your Budget Now

Incorporating your student loan payments into your budget now is a crucial step to ensure you are financially prepared when payments resume.

This doesn’t necessarily mean making the payments, but by factoring in this line item on your budget now, you can proactively make adjustments to your budget and avoid any last-minute financial strain when payments resume in October.

Take the time to review your loan terms, including interest rates and repayment options, to gain a comprehensive understanding of what to expect. This knowledge will enable you to assess the impact of your loan payments on your budget and make necessary adjustments in advance.


The current student loan situation is one of deep complexity, with seemingly no clear solutions in sight. With tuition costs rising beyond the means of most families and states unable to keep their promises of higher education that doesn’t overwhelm borrowers after graduation, many find themselves drowning in debt despite working hard for an education.

The importance we’ve been placing on higher education has created a nation where student debt continues to rise year after year and graduate outcomes still reveal high levels of underemployment.

The magnitude of this crisis should not be minimized; while there are options for managing student loans, there’s no easy fix as of today.

Until a resolution can be found collectively, every borrower needs to take full ownership over their student loan debt by writing out a budget that acknowledges the coming payments they must make and take proactive steps now to pay off their loans later on.

There is hope in understanding that taking the necessary steps now will lead to success later, so please don’t give up: you have the power to make change and overcome overwhelming obstacles like this looming return for your future!